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Old 05-18-2009, 10:55 PM
 
Location: Polish Hill, Pittsburgh, PA
26,015 posts, read 44,972,375 times
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Question "Cheapest" Grocery Store?

Since my move is now only a few days away (and since I'll be without an Internet connection from Saturday-Tuesday) I was hoping to gain some insight here as to which supermarket chain in the Reston area someone on a tight budget (coupon-clipper may I add) should consider? From my apartment complex along North Shore Drive in Reston I will be within walking distance to the following:

Harris Teeter: (Immediately North of Reston Town Center, Near Office Depot)
Whole Foods: (Sunset Hills Road Near Plaza America)
Trader Joe's: (Behind Silver Diner Off of Route 606)
Safeway: (Hunter's Woods Village Center, Reston or Elden Street, Herndon)

If the "deals" are good enough I'd be willing to drive to another store in another community as well. I've already heard Whole Foods referenced as "Whole Paycheck," so I suppose that place would be out of the running. I'm inclined to think Safeway is the cheapest out of the four I listed, but I do know that Trader Joe's has some very cheap liquor.
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Old 05-18-2009, 11:14 PM
 
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For produce, meat and fish it's hard to beat H-Mart (on Lee Hwy between Hwy 234 and 123, next door to a Petco or Petsmart). It's a Korean grocery store but amazing selections and prices. I also go to Harris Teeters/Safeway to get milk, bread, can goods and coupon items. But I don't buy any fresh items there.
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Old 05-19-2009, 02:03 AM
 
Location: Fairfax County
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Agree on the H-Mart recommendation and would add in Wegmans
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Old 05-19-2009, 05:54 AM
 
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Even though Wegmans is very upscale (as supermarkets go in this area) - the Wegmans brand food is cheap and they have a lot of sales. It is the speciality items in Wegmans that are pricy - pastries, fancy meats, etc.
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Old 05-19-2009, 06:07 AM
 
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I believe that Wegman's gets consistently rated for having the lowest prices as long as you stick to their "inner" grocery store section and stay out of the specialty area. Even name brand stuff there is cheaper than other places. My second place to shop for low prices is Shoppers Food Warehouse. I have a newer one near my house is pretty nice but the locations can vary as to how well they are maintained.
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Old 05-19-2009, 06:22 AM
 
Location: Home is where the heart is
15,402 posts, read 17,311,066 times
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On Rt. 7 near Herndon/Sterling there is a large ethnic grocery that has good prices and an interesting selection of food. It's on the north side of 7, near the IHOP. And right across the street is a Shoppers, which has good prices. I'm not thrilled by the produce or meat at Shoppers, but it's a good place to get canned goods and such.
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Old 05-19-2009, 06:22 AM
 
Location: DC
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Shoppers is typically the cheapest, but I agree with the above that locations can vary in quality. Mine is fairly nice and has decent meat and produce, so if I can't find it at Trader Joe's I go there. For specialty items (good cheese, bread, fruit, etc) I found Trader Joe's to be cheaper than Safeway. If Safeway's having a sale then the prices aren't too bad, but regular price is a little high. Same thing for Harris Teeter ($1 for a small non-organic zucchini? Don't think so).
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Old 05-19-2009, 06:33 AM
 
1,221 posts, read 4,065,438 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChristineVA View Post
I believe that Wegman's gets consistently rated for having the lowest prices as long as you stick to their "inner" grocery store section and stay out of the specialty area. Even name brand stuff there is cheaper than other places. My second place to shop for low prices is Shoppers Food Warehouse. I have a newer one near my house is pretty nice but the locations can vary as to how well they are maintained.
I second ChristineVA's recommendations. Wegmans definitely has the best prices on everyday items; quality and customer service are superb. I don't go to Shoppers often, but they have good prices.
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Old 05-19-2009, 06:37 AM
 
Location: Springfield VA
4,033 posts, read 4,939,293 times
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I usually shop at Giant if I'm going to do a grocery store. I dispise cooking and I'm a pretty picky eater but yeah Giant is a fav for me.

Whole Foods is very expensive. In my opinion you wouldn't do all your grocery shopping there. Whole Foods is good for special occasions or that certain treat. Keep in mind that it is a gourmet grocery store so just about everything there is organic or just fancy for fancy sake. They have a fairly good deli (nothing compares to delis down south, sigh) so if you don't feel like cooking they have a large selection of cooked food and a good salad bar but again not the cheapest but the most expensive.

Trader Joes is a lot like Whole Foods but without the salad bar and cooked food. So again that's where you'd go for a special occasion. They're known for a good wine selection. Please note that you can't buy liquor in grocery stores here. If you want liquor like vodka you have to shop at the state owned Vabc.

Harris Teeter in my opinion is the best grocery store but not the cheapest. I just like the layout of the store and think their stores are nicer and cleaner. They'll have good deals but overall they're kinda expensive. Although out of the four listed I'd go with Harris Teeter.

Safeway seems like it would be the cheapest and it too has deals every now and then. A survey done a few months ago showed Safeway to actually be the most expensive grocery store in the area. Personally not a big fan of Safeway like I said Giant is a happy medium.

In the end they are all expensive some will have deals on what you particularly like some won't. For example I'm a Sunkist fiend but Giant isn't having a sale on Sunkist today usually that means some other grocery store is. So maybe I'll check out Harris Teeter or Safeway and see what's up. Although Giant is so much closer than any of the other grocery stores to my house so obviously I'm a little biased. Get a discount card for all them and see if there's a Giant that's in Reston.

Last edited by terrence81; 05-19-2009 at 06:55 AM..
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Old 05-19-2009, 06:53 AM
 
Location: Gainesville, VA
1,168 posts, read 3,560,640 times
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For every day stuff & wonderful experience, I'd pick Wegmans. I don't care for Giant & Safeway or Bloom for that matter. I hate Shoppers because of dirty bathrooms & out of date produce, but you can come away with free food by using coupons there. Next to Wegmans I like Harris Teeter, but their prices are on the high side. Bottom Dollar also has cheap boxed & canned goods. They had an amazing sale last year on ketchup, mustard, pasta sauce, crackers and much more. They were 50 cents each.

But if you have the time, I'd gather up all the sales papers and pick out the loss leaders and take advantage of double & triple coupons.

Local farmers' markets are great for produce.
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